A Comparison between the Effects of Environmental and Behavioral Interventions on Sleep Cycle of Preterm Infants in NICU

Document Type: Original Article


Isfahan University of Medical Science Faculty of Nursing & Midwifery, Isfahan, Iran


Background: Due to the importance of sleep in brain development of infants, this study was designed to compare the effects of environmental and behavioral Interventions on sleep cycle of preterm infants in NICU.
Methods: In this prospective crossover clinical trial, 40 preterm infants with fetal age of 32 to 36 weeks hospitalized in NICU were selected. Infants were randomly divided into the two groups of environmental-behavioral intervention and behavioral -environmental intervention, based on the order of the performed interventions. The study included three courses of control, first intervention and second intervention each held for 2 hours. Sleep states were assessed by Prechtl sleeping and waking assessment tool.
Results: Mean of quiet sleep time in three different courses showed significant differences and in behavioral intervention course was more in comparison to the two other courses (p<0.05). Mean of active sleep time in the behavioral course was significantly less than that in other courses. But, there was no significant difference between the control and environmental courses.
Conclusion: Both behavioral and environmental interventions can increase total time of sleep and quiet sleep but behavioral intervention has more effect on quiet sleep. Therefore, infants sleep in NICU can be improved by behavioral interventions.



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